I was snooping around the sub-forum and the construction helmet thread inspired me to post this. I have ridden horses all my life, but it has been somewhat more recently that I have been riding at night. Originally I just used the N-rit MasterVisionTM G3 Cap Light http://n-ritusa.com/html/products/caplights/g3caplight (Actually, mine is an earlier version of this without the ultra sonic bug repellent.) I can't even tell how many lumens this is rated at.
Then I added a Remington RMHL4AA-B. So what I end up doing is wearing a high visibility yellow cat with the cap light clipped underneath and the headlamp on the out side of the cap. Usually on the trail I simply turn of the cap light because it is not needed. When I am putting on the saddle and bridle it is actually more useful than the Remington, however.
Also, because I have to cross a state highway that can be busy, I wear a hgi visibility yellow traffic safety vest and a flashing LED traffic vest over that.
Anyway, now I have been giving some thought to possibly getting an equestrian riding helmet. I would like to find one that is either blaze orange or high vivibility yellow, but I haven't found one of those yet. I may just end up getting one like this Troxel Sport Helmet http://www.smartpakequine.com/troxel...x?cm_vc=Searchhttp://www.troxelhelmets.com/ I am now looking for some suggestions on other equestrian riding helmets that I should consider AND appropriate helmet lights for that helmet.
Also, I do realize that what I want may not exist currently, so I am certainly willing to improvise. If there is some other sort of helmet worthy of consideration, I will take a look at it. For example, if there is a bicycle helmet it would probably be better than what I am doing now, which is riding with no helmet at all. In addition to the helemt, does anybody happen to know how difficult it is to make an existing helmet of what ever type "high visibility"? I imagine with my painting skills it might look horrible, but being seen is more important to me than fashion.
I also have a reflective brow band for my horses bridle, whcih I use day and night. I do have horse leg reflectors similar to these http://www.sinoblue.com/?p=1432 , but I don't always use them.
Anyway, if anybody has any helpful thoughts on the riding helmet and helmet lights, I would like to hear it. I am still trying to figure out what is the right amount of light for trail riding. As I posted earlier, the cap light seems to be fine for putting on and removing tack, but the Remington seems better for the actual ride on the trail.
Last edited by JAS; 10-06-2012 at 02:42 PM.
As no one else has commented on your post I'll give you my thoughts for your consideration. Head mounted lights are very much a personal thing and depend on the uses you'll put it to. Most head mounted lights are not designed for throw and provide for plenty of peripheral vision. The distance these lights throw are usually within a few metres and enable people to see where they are immediately going and what they are doing within an area directly in front of them. The head lights which provide throw usually, but not always, are lacking in spill and give the user a smaller area of vision but at greater range. The disadvantage is many of those lights present the user with an experience similar to tunnel vision and relay on the user moving their head from side to side to see objects not illuminated by the lack of spill. In addition to these considerations you must factor in what type of battery source you wish to use. AA, CR123s or rechargeables. Each type of battery has its uses and very few lights use more than one type of battery. Having not ridden a horse at night I can't say whether or not the animal would benefit from the illumination that a head mounted light you wear would be beneficial for it. I will therefore work on the assumption that the horse will use some of the light you provide to ensure its surefootedness? That being so you would need a light capable of providing good range and spill but not so bright that it causes the horse to be blinded when you look down? Although it is a guess on my part I think something like the Petzl NAO would be great for you. The NAO uses something called reactive lighting. In essence when you look down it reduces the amount of light used and when you look forward it provides sufficient light to see clearly down a track/road etc. The NAO is also a rechargeable light so I suspect that could be useful to use if you do a lot of night time rides? Retention on helmets is either via bands or via velcro stuck onto the helmet to which the light attaches to. I'm unaware of any riding helmets which are designed for lights so I guess whatever you buy will require some sort of compromise in the way it's mounted. If the NAO doesn't float your boat I'd look at the Lupine range of lights. Lupine are expensive but so is owning and keeping a horse so cost shouldn't really be a big issue.
I would have provide links to both Petzl and Lupine lights but understand this is not allowed on this forum. However, a quick Google search will bring you both manufacturers sites. In addition you can then always do a search on Youtube to see what the lights are like in real life use.
As I said nothing ventured, nothing gained! Hope you find something and I'd be interested to hear if you get something which you find satisfactory?